Last Updated:

Nepal Elects Ram Chandra Poudel Of Nepali Congress As Country's Third President

 Nepal's parliament held a presidential election on Thursday amidst a backdrop of growing political instability.

Written By
sagar kar

Image: ANI

Nepal has elected Ram Chandra Poudel of the Nepali Congress as country's third president. Nepal's parliament held a presidential election on Thursday amidst a backdrop of growing political instability. The nation's coalition government, which has only been in power for a few months, is fragile and facing mounting challenges. Although the president holds limited political power, their election has sparked conflicts within the ruling alliance, led by Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal.

In a controversial move, Dahal supported 78-year-old Ram Chandra Poudel from the opposition Nepali Congress party, leading to frustration from the Communist Party of Nepal (Unified Marxist Leninist), his main coalition partner. As a result, the Communist Party has withdrawn from the coalition, according to a report from South China Morning Post. Paudel secured 33,802 electoral votes while his rival Subash Chandra Nembwang secured 15,518 electoral votes, according to the Nepalese Election Commision. Poudel received the vote of 214 lawmakers of the federal parliament and 352 provincial assembly members.

"Hearty congratulations to my friend Ram Candra Poudelji for being elected as the President," Nepali Congress chief Sher Bahadur Deuba tweeted.

With the support from eight political parties, 78-year-old Poudel's victory was certain. His rival Subas Chandra Nebmang had backing of former PM KP Sharma-led CPN-UML. This was the third presidential election in Nepal since the country became a republic in 2008. The tenure of current president, Bidya Devi Bhandari, will conclude on March 12.

The total number of voters for the President election is 882, consisting of 332 MPs and 550 members of the provincial assemblies of the seven provinces. Election Commission spokesperson Shaligram said 518 provincial assembly members and 313 members of parliament voted in the presidential election.

Poltical instability in Nepal

Despite the lack of a clear explanation, political observers are closely scrutinizing Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal's decision to back an opposition candidate and break his coalition alliance. Power struggles among Nepal's major political parties are not uncommon, as the country has experienced eight different governments in the past decade alone. Following a hung parliament in November's national election, a fragile coalition government was formed and now faces further instability as Dahal is set to face a confidence vote in parliament later this month. Analysts warn that the outcome of the presidential election and the confidence vote could further exacerbate the already precarious political situation in the country.

First Published: